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Pike, Brigid (2007) In brief. Drugnet Ireland, Issue 24, Winter 2007, p. 26.

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On 2 May 2007 the National Crime Council (NCC) published the report Problem-solving justice – the case for community courts in Ireland.  It recommendsthe establishment of community courts, starting with inner-city Dublin. Community courts are being developed in other jurisdictions as an example of ‘problem-solving justice’ to deal with less grave crimes which have a material impact on the ‘quality of life’ of citizens, such as drug possession, public order offences, petty theft, prostitution or vandalism.  

In June 2007 the Parole Board published its annual report for 2006. The chair of the Board observed, ‘It is a matter of grave concern to the Board that drugs appear to be available in many of the prisons and places of detention in the country. ... In considering whether or not to recommend temporary release (commonly known as parole) in any given case to the Minister, the Board's prime concern is the danger that the prisoner will re-offend. Quite clearly, if that prisoner is still on drugs, the risk of his or her re-offending is increased immeasurably. It is virtually impossible to see how the Board could recommend temporary release in respect of a prisoner who still requires to feed a drug addiction.’ www.justice.ie 

On 10 September 2007 Teenspace: National Recreation Policy for Young People was launched by the Minister for Children, Brendan Smith TD. The policy states that sport, recreation and leisure activities are effective in preventing young people from using alcohol and drugs. However, it recognises that at-risk youth – early school-leavers, socially excluded young people, Travellers – may lack positive motivation to participate and that this step must be made first. The policy also acknowledges the need for alcohol- and drug-free spaces for young people.

On 20 September 2007 the EAP Institute hosted its 28th annual conference, ‘Drugs & Alcohol at Work – Complying with the Safety Health & Welfare at Work Act 2005’. The conference heard that policies and procedures for handling situations where employees report for work while under the influence of alcohol and/or drugs should now be in place in all organisations, and that incidents of this nature should now be considered gross misconduct. www.eapinstitute.com 

On 30 September 2007 the Maritime Analysis and Operations Centre (Narcotics) (MAOC-N) was established, when a treaty was signed by Ireland, the UK, the Netherlands, France, Spain, Portugal and Italy. Based in Lisbon, the MAOC-N is an international task force that will collect and analyse information on drug trafficking, enhance intelligence exchange and identify the availability of naval and other assets to facilitate national drug interdiction operations. It will focus on interdicting large maritime and aviation cocaine shipments, especially from South and Latin America. www.justice.ie 

In September 2007 the Dublin North-East Drugs Task Force launched issue 1 of Uth.http://www.dnetaskforce.ie/   

In September 2007 the Addiction Search Engine (ASE) was launched by the Ana Liffey Drug Project. This Google-customised search engine is designed to help users find information about addiction and drug-related issues. The ASE searches over 100 specially selected websites and the sites that they are linked to. The ASE can be accessed via the website of the Ana Liffey Drug Project. www.aldp.ie 

On 1 October 2007, World Hepatitis Awareness Day (WHAD), the Central and Eastern European Harm Reduction Network (CEEHRN) published a study, HCV infection in Europe. It highlights the significant inconsistencies in HCV testing and diagnosis across Europe. Only 10% – 40% of people with HCV know about their infection, according to data from different parts of Europe. (On 10 October 2007 the Eurasian Harm Reduction Network (EHRN) was adopted as the new name of the CEEHRN, to more accurately reflect the geographic scope of the network throughout Central and Eastern Europe and Central Asia.) 

On 10 October 2007 the Council of Europe’s Committee for the Prevention of Torture (CPT) published a report on its 4th periodic visit to Ireland, which took place in October 2006, together with the response of the Irish government. The report stated that there was an increasing level of inter-prisoner violence, fuelled by the widespread availability of illicit drugs and the existence of a gang culture. www.cpt.coe.int/ 

On 18 October 2007 Business in the Community Ireland (BITCI) launched its landmark report on best practice in corporate responsibility in Ireland in 2006. Among the case studies described was Oracle Emea Ltd, which encouraged its employees to volunteer in their local community. Over 100 Oracle volunteers participated in projects, including the painting of the Chrysalis Community Drug Project. www.bitc.ie 

On 23–24 October 2007 the Children Acts Advisory Board (CAAB) held its national conference, ‘Sharing the Task: Achieving Child Protection & Welfare through Interagency-Working’, in Kilkenny. The CAAB is the new name for the Special Residential Services Board (SRSB), whose name and functions were changed in the Child Care (Amendment) Act 2007. The CAAB has broader functions, becoming an overall advisory body whose functions now include providing advice to the Minister for Children on policy issues relating to the co-ordinated delivery (and effectiveness) of services to at risk children/young people specifically under the Child Care Act 1991 and the Children Act 2001. www.caab.ie    

In October 2007 the International Drug Policy Consortium (IDPC) published the first iteration of its Advocacy Guide. In the run-up to the forthcoming UN review of  its drug strategies since 1998, this advocacy guideserves as an introduction to the structure and operation of the UN drug control systems, and describes the review processes that will take place throughout 2008, culminating in a high-level political meeting in 2009. As the review process progresses, updated versions of the IDPC Advocacy Guide will be released in order to update civil society and refine the IDPC position. http://idpc.net/    

Item Type
Publication Type
Irish-related, International, Open Access, Article
Drug Type
All substances
Issue Title
Issue 24, Winter 2007
October 2007
Page Range
p. 26
Health Research Board
Issue 24, Winter 2007
Accession Number
HRB (Available)

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